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How to Make Atchara: Filipino-Style Green Papaya Relish

As a child, Edwin's mom told him, "If you want to eat, you should cook it yourself." And that's exactly what he's been doing ever since.

Filipino sweet and sour green papaya relish

Filipino sweet and sour green papaya relish

Sweet and Sour Pickled Green Papaya Relish

I normally don't like pickles, but I like this Filipino-style one because it's a bit sweet. Typically, it is served as a side dish with fried foods, but it can be eaten by itself, as well.

This relish calls for julienned green papayas and carrots. If you like Thai green papaya salad, and if you like the pickled carrots found in your Vietnamese banh mi sandwich, then I'm sure you'll love this Filipino recipe.

Using a knife to julienne the green papaya can be a bit time-consuming, but you can speed things up with a julienne peeler, which is what I did.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

15 min

20 min

35 min

8-10 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 green papaya, peeled, seeded, and julienned
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and julienned
  • 1 thumb ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 5 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 3/4 cups white vinegar
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced into strips
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Prepare the green papaya (refer to the photos below).
  2. Mix the julienned papaya and 1 tablespoon salt in a bowl. Transfer the papaya into a colander. Put the colander on top of the bowl. This will drain the excess moisture from the papayas. Let it sit for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  3. Rinse the papaya in the colander in running tap water. Pat the papaya dry with paper towels.
  4. Boil the vinegar, 1 tablespoon salt, and sugar, in a pot for 4 minutes. Add the ginger, onions, and garlic, then cover and remove from heat. Allow it to cool.
  5. Combine the papayas and all the remaining ingredients in a bowl.
  6. Transfer to sterilized jars, seal, and refrigerate for 3 days before serving.

Variations

  • If you desire spicy atchara, add chili peppers or whole peppercorns in step 4.
  • You can add or substitute other vegetables, such as cabbage.
  • You can use any type of vinegar you like, such as cider vinegar.

Julienne Peeler